Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Shrove Tuesday Pancake Race

To "shrive" is Old English meaning to hear the confession of a sinner, a lot of which was done before Ash Wednesday and Lent.  Thus Shrove Tuesday was the day before Lent.

It was also the day on which any stores of eggs, butter, and milk, prohibited items during Lent, needed to be used up.  Thus the tradition of pancakes on Shrove Tuesday.

England has taken the tradition to a whole new level, with pancake races around the city.  Friends attended such a race at Parliament.  I went to the race at Spitafields which raised money for charity.  

Mostly college students participated decked out in matching, bizarre outfits like the winning "Where's Waldo" team, above.  There was also a special needs group, whose roars from the crowd were touching.  The teams raced in relay, having to flip pancakes as they ran at designated spots along the route, pictured below.

I didn't stay for the free pancakes, as I took the occasion to have amazing, cheap curry on Brick Street.

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1 comment:

  1. so sad that i missed this outing. darn guests. here's hoping we're here next year to celebrate.